Pride In the Tiger to seek full-time director

MARSHALL – An important leader of the Pride In the Tiger Foundation will be stepping down later this summer, and members of the foundation board are planning to hire a full-time replacement. At the Marshall School Board’s regular meeting Monday, Foundation President Austin DeMuth said the Pride In the Tiger Foundation hopes to hire an executive director by the end of July.

DeMuth gave school board members an update on the foundation’s activities.

The Pride In the Tiger Foundation was founded in 1999. Over the past 17 years, the foundation has grown to have more than $2 million in assets. DeMuth said this year, the foundation awarded a total of $124,000 in scholarships to graduating Marshall High School seniors, as well as a total of $63,500 in classroom grants for both public and private schools in Marshall.

“It’s our wish as a board, to keep this green and growing,” DeMuth said.

However, the foundation is facing a change, as current executive director Bill Swope retires in August. DeMuth said the Foundation Board had to decide whether to look for a director who would serve part-time, like Swope did, or full-time. DeMuth said the foundation board is proposing to hire a full-time executive director, with compensation of around $48,000. The board will be looking for a three-year commitment from a new executive director, because it takes around 14 to 16 months to fully develop new fundraising sources, he said.

The cost of the executive director’s compensation would be supported through increased fundraising, DeMuth said.

“That is our big challenge right now,” he said.

DeMuth said the Pride In the Tiger Foundation hopes to post the director’s position this month, and hire a candidate in July. It would give the new executive director a chance to work with Swope before he retires.

The school board voted to approve a resolution canvassing the results of last week’s referendum to fund building expansions in the district. A total of 3,250 votes were cast in the referendum, with 1,511 votes in favor, 1,735 votes against, and four blank or defective ballots, said Superintendent Scott Monson.

While the referendum failed, Monson said there is still work to do to address building and classroom space needs in the Marshall district.

Monson said the facilities planning committee will meet this summer to discuss space needs.

School board member Dion Caron asked if the district would be holding a town hall meeting, or using other methods to get feedback on the referendum from voters.

Monson said it might be difficult to do that over the summer, but it could happen if the planning committee could figure out how.

In the meeting’s Tiger Spotlight, school board members thanked student school board representatives Fadumo Ismail and Monica Timmerman for their service. Ismail and Timmerman will both be graduating this week, and going on to pursue college degrees.

Board members approved MHS students Kevin Berg, Sameh Hedlin and Lyth Shahin as student school board members for the 2016-2017 school year.